Yesterday I got to work, and it was one of those days where there was a lot of conversation with co-workers. They were asking me about another co-worker, a good friend of mine, who has been out sick. They were asking me how I’ve been since the baby went to another family. They were asking me how my relationship is going with my boyfriend. It was good, but it was a little overwhelming. Nothing I couldn’t handle, just more than a normal day.
Then I went to my mailbox and found a blue bib with brown piping around the edges. In the middle it said, “Lil’ Dude”. It was lovingly placed in a large zip lock bag. I immediately felt emotion well up. I had been “fine” that morning, so fine, in fact, that I could even talk about Little Dude going to his new home without getting emotional. There was no indication of who the gift was from, so I asked who gave it to me, not expecting to hear an answer, but more just wondering out loud.
The giver was in the office, a good friend of mine who I have known and worked with for nearly nine years. She has kept up with my blog and knows that I refer to the baby as “Little Dude” and wanted to give me something special to remember him by. I cried…not like a single tear or two dripping down my face, but like really cried. I cried out of gratitude for such a thoughtful gift. I cried out of sadness that Little Dude has moved on and I may not know what comes of him. I cried out of the pain of the hole that has been left in my heart…a hole that I know God is going to fill in.
When I got home that day, I got a phone call from my agency social worker. She needed to get some paperwork from me, but the main reason for her call was that she wanted to see how I was doing, how I was processing giving up my first baby. She also wanted to confirm that I was going to take a break for a month before accepting another baby because she had people at the agency asking her who she had available to accept babies. I confirmed that I would, indeed, be taking a month off.
When I got off the phone, I cried. I cried because, although I know that it is the right thing for me to do to take a break for a month, I am afraid to surrender MY plans to God. I am afraid that taking a break will mean that Little Dude was both the first and the last foster baby that I will get to take care of. I cried because my agency is turning down four or five babies a day because they don’t have families to send them to, and I have the space in my heart and in my home to take care of them, to love them, to nurture them. And I want to do it. I feel called to do it.
All of that being said, I have recent experience with surrender. I know that God’s plan for my life is infinitely better than MY plan could EVER be. I know that God will take care of me. I know that my surrender will mean his blessings. This call to surrender is a reminder that I don’t call the shots, God does, and I am happy to follow because I know His way will always be better than mine. I don’t want to be in control of my life. My best-laid plans have gotten me into some bad places. God’s plan always leads me to wonderful places, most notably, back to Him.
With all of the tears yesterday, I got to laugh a little today with a good friend who I got to talk to for over an hour on the phone. I make a lot of references to the show “Friends”, and it is all the better when the people I am talking to know what I’m refereeing to. So, today, I told my friend that I was relating to the “Friends” character “Phoebe”. She was a surrogate for her brother and his wife and was pregnant with triplets. I told my friend that I relate with her having to give up the babies after caring for them in the womb for 9 months.
My friend piped right in and said, “My favorite is when Phoebe is sitting in the living room with Monica and Rachel, and she says, ‘Can I tell you something? I want to keep one!’”
Yes, I relate to Phoebe. I do want to keep one. But mostly, I just want to follow the plans God has for my life. His story for me is amazing.